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The AU Factor - Come in here to discuss all things AU!!

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction and Writing Resource' started by Katana_Geldar, Apr 23, 2006.

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  1. Katana_Geldar

    Katana_Geldar Jedi Grand Master star 8

    Registered:
    Mar 3, 2003
    Due to the growing number of AU fics spouting about, I thought it would be appropriate to create this thread. Is there is another thread, give me the link and I'll lock this one but I haven't managed to find one by searching.

    Here are some useful links for AU readers and writers.

    [link=http://boards.theforce.net/Fan_Fiction_Resource/b10304/16889006/?27]AU Story Reccomendations (Reading)[/link]

    [link=http://boards.theforce.net/Fan_Fiction_Resource/b10304/16235946/?10]The AU Zone (Challenge thread)[/link]

    [link=http://boards.theforce.net/Fan_Fiction_Resource/b10304/16235946/?10]What if?...AU Thread Version 2.0 (Index)[/link]

    Here's the opening question, what attracted to to write an AU fic?

    Me? The intriguing thought about what would happen if Padme was a jedi. Though that wasn't the only thing I changed.
     
  2. leiamoody

    leiamoody Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 8, 2005
    What inspired me? Well, back in the late 80's, that was the only possibility you were allowed to have! No such thing as EU when I first came up with my ideas! ;)

    But even now, after all these years, I still want to do this whole AU series that I wanted to do back then. It's a tougher prospect now, because of the EU. There isn't as much of an audience for stories that stray too far from the canon or the EU, because most of the Star Wars fans are more used to reading that stuff. To actually attempt a fully divergent AU is risky nowadays. You're automatically going to have a smaller audience. You open yourself up to more criticism because you might be changing certain plotlines, or eliminating them altogether. Certain characters might not show up, which can irritate some people. But if you have an idea that's AU, you should have the right to follow it. That's my belief, anyway, and I'd like to stick to it.

    At least, I'm trying to, anyway. I'd like a larger readership, and sometimes it might be easier if I just threw a character like Mara Jade into my storyline, just because she has a large fanbase. But if I have to alter my plotline too much, is it my story anymore? No. And you have to write the stories YOU want to write. Not what others always want to see.
     
  3. Katana_Geldar

    Katana_Geldar Jedi Grand Master star 8

    Registered:
    Mar 3, 2003
    To actually attempt a fully divergent AU is risky nowadays. You're automatically going to have a smaller audience. You open yourself up to more criticism because you might be changing certain plotlines, or eliminating them altogether.

    I can't help but agree as AU is next door to a crossover which can't really be taken seriously all the time.

    Then again, who's to say that AU can't be taken seriously? AU is an invitation to do what you like, but the best ideas can come out of it.
     
  4. aurrasingrules101

    aurrasingrules101 Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Apr 13, 2003
    i wrote two J/J stories, one following DN and one a NJO AU, and, surprisingly, i got a HUGE response to my AU while i got very little for my other. my AU is currently up to 62 pages.
     
  5. Herman Snerd

    Herman Snerd Jedi Master star 6

    Registered:
    Oct 31, 1999

    I don't see it quite that way. I lost any interest in the EU a long time ago and I know I'm not the only one. I'd wager that as the EU languishes on, more and more will stray from it and choose to follow their own path through SW fandom.
     
  6. Luna_Nightshade

    Luna_Nightshade Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Jan 25, 2006
    I'm not one for the EU, but I am ridiculously inspired to write Saga AU. The characters on screen are remarkably well-rounded, and their interaction lends itself to a host of stories if you pay more attention to relationships than you do to the actual story. If you simply let the characters be themselves and change their circumstances, the Saga is a perfect canvas for AU.
     
  7. Katana_Geldar

    Katana_Geldar Jedi Grand Master star 8

    Registered:
    Mar 3, 2003
    The penultimate AU IMHO is ROTS AU, we all want to have a go at that ever since we saw it.

    But here's something interesting: writing AU teaches you about canon. If we want to change something we have to realise the necessary steps in order to do it.

    Save Dooku in ROTS? You have to get rid of Palpatine from the fight somehow.
    Save Padme? Again, you have to get rid of Palpatine, preferably killing him off early.
    Stop Anakin turning to the dark side? Whoa, that's a big ask. You have to work Palpatine, Padme and Obi-Wan and maybe even Mace and Yoda to get this to happen.
     
  8. Luna_Nightshade

    Luna_Nightshade Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Jan 25, 2006
    Oh, sure, you can work the typically expected characters...

    What makes it very fun is when you pull in someone unexpected and make them suddenly important.
     
  9. Noelie

    Noelie Jedi Padawan star 4

    Registered:
    Jul 11, 2005
    Yeah.. I am pretty much an AU junkie- I admit it. I think Fanfiction is frequently far more brilliant than the SW franchise stuff I have to pay for.

     
  10. Katana_Geldar

    Katana_Geldar Jedi Grand Master star 8

    Registered:
    Mar 3, 2003
    What makes it very fun is when you pull in someone unexpected and make them suddenly important.

    Or you put two characters together who NEVER meet. Like Han Solo and Anakin Skywalker.
     
  11. LLL

    LLL Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jul 16, 2000
    I wrote mine (in sig) because of a lot of reading I have been doing regarding the nature of good and evil and my attempts to understand people who do heinous things. I noticed a discrepancy in the SW movies, between what GL says about the general nature of evil and what we as a human society should do with evil people, and how one character in particular seems to be treated as a glaring exception. What I read urges a new understanding of evil and ways to handle these people, and because this stuff has deeply personal meaning for me, I tend to gravitate toward these topics when I write about anything.

    As I read Stover's ROTS novel, it dawned on me that if I wanted to express my understanding in writing, there was just no possible better way to do it than through a SW AU. There was no way to get anywhere near the same effect through an original story, because the SW world is so thoroughly burned into our brains that differences from how we know it is will stand out and not only be hard to misunderstand, but immediately meaningful. Trying to do the same thing in any other fandom wouldn't have the same effect, either, because in this universe, we have characters, the Sith, who not only are the epitome of evil, but who codify some of how and why they do what they do, and are more conscious of their thinking and reasoning than just about any other villian in any other universe.

    Plus, in Palpy, you have the ultimate villian. We've seen that redeeming Darth Vader was no big trick, because he was never hard core in the first place. Palpatine commits the worst crimes ever presented in any genre that I know of; if you want to deal with ultimate evil, there's no better place to work.

    In short, I wrote my AU because I had something to say and SW made the absolute best platform to say it, bar none.
     
  12. Katana_Geldar

    Katana_Geldar Jedi Grand Master star 8

    Registered:
    Mar 3, 2003
    Palpy's so much fun to write, he's not just a villain he's a master dissembler who plays Anakin like a violin.

    AU not only allows us to do what we like, but it can also be where we put to rights where we think GL went wrong.

    And I might have a look at that fic.
     
  13. Luna_Nightshade

    Luna_Nightshade Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Jan 25, 2006
    ^^ Shouldn't be hard to find, Katana. T'is the Saga fic of the month. ;)

    *sigh* If only I had more time... I HATE FINALS!!!! I barely have enough time to get all my work done and do my updates and read the fics I get pm's on, never mind the other ones. *sigh*
     
  14. Katana_Geldar

    Katana_Geldar Jedi Grand Master star 8

    Registered:
    Mar 3, 2003
    You know what we should do when we really get moving? have a challenged or RR.
     
  15. leia_naberrie

    leia_naberrie Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Sep 10, 2002
    [blockquote]what attracted to to write an AU fic?[/blockquote]
    My AU story is a PT Vader-centric story with Vader the same age Anakin was in 19.

    Why I wrote it: o so many reasons!

    It was inspired by a Star Trek AU episode called 'Through A Mirror Darkly' where right from the opening scroll, we see a different star trek verse with the humans attacking their first visitors (Vulcans, I believe?) instead of welcoming them. So I started wondering how the GFFA would have been if the Sith had won the last Jedi/Sith war and the Empire - not the Republic - had been around for millenia. So I wrote the story partly because I wanted to explore this other 'verse.

    Another reason I wrote the story was because I wanted to see how the 'good guys' we know from canon, would fare as bad guys and vice versa and still keep them in character and realistic.

    Probably the most important reason though is that I wanted to write an unleashed!Vader :p story where unlike canon, he never had the foundation of over a decade of Jedi training, but rather had been a Sith from birth. I wanted to explore the potential of his character - his powers, his ruthlessness, his ambition.

    The story ended up going a little bit away from me and I'm not sure I hit all the marks I wanted to achieve. But I did have fun, which I suppose is the most necessary reason to write anything at all!
     
  16. KELIA

    KELIA Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Jul 26, 2005
    what attracted you to write an AU fic?

    I'd have to say my biggest reasons are my love for Star Wars and an overactive imagination! :p
    Seriously, as much as I love the movies, there are a few things I really did not like (Padme's death in ROTS for starters) and writing AU gives me a chance to put my own spin on things.

     
  17. MariahJade2

    MariahJade2 Former Fan Fiction Archive Editor star 5 VIP

    Registered:
    Mar 18, 2001
    One thing I have always enjoyed doing with AU's is to change just one small thing and then let events enfold from there. It's amazing how a small change, be it a choice, or a missed communication can make all the difference in the world.
     
  18. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Jedi Grand Master star 9

    Registered:
    Mar 26, 2001
    I got into AUs because I was simply fed up with people NOT writing explanations for things.
     
  19. Luna_Nightshade

    Luna_Nightshade Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Jan 25, 2006
    I agree with MariahJade. My AU's don't start out huge--I only ever tweak a teensy bit of the story. Something incredibly small and usually pretty logical. However, by the time I get a few chapters in, it has gone so far off the expected that it really counts as AU. Then it turns into my own story, which I love. Star Wars is set up perfectly for that.
     
  20. DarthIshtar

    DarthIshtar Jedi Grand Master star 9

    Registered:
    Mar 26, 2001
    Well, I can understand that. My first true AU was my first story here on the boards and I was writing a very nice little Luke/Leia story about how they really should have realized they were twins, but at one point, I thought that they must have, at some point, been captured by the Empire again. From there it turned into "Well, okay, vader's got them, but what will he do so they won't get killed? I know! Put them on trial to stall for time!"
     
  21. LilyHobbitJedi

    LilyHobbitJedi Jedi Knight star 5

    Registered:
    Aug 29, 2005
    There are many factors that attracted me to AU stories. There was a time not so long ago when I didn't really like AU at all. I consistently avoided them. Then after I found this forum, I ended up reading some very good ones. Canon is so depressing the way it is, that it became a struggle not to put my own twist on things.

    One of those is the fact that Jedi can't fall in love. I've become addicted to writing AU stories where they find romance anyways. Now, most of my stories are AU and I have a whole list of plot bunnies and most are AU. If you have a great plot then they can be extremely popular stories.

    Over all I must say that AU stories are the most intriguing I've ever read. And I plan to continue writing them.
     
  22. cdmcc

    cdmcc Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Apr 24, 2005
    I've grown to like AU since being on here. It is a question of how much you tweak things. If you go mad, I can find it a bit confusing, but then I'm a bit of a dunce with the memory of a goldfish. I specifically like it when very small parts, almost imperceptible, are changed which leads to huge consequences.

    Generally I just kill people off!
     
  23. LLL

    LLL Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jul 16, 2000

    VERY true. And the one small thing you change can be very meaningful.
     
  24. Star_Angel

    Star_Angel Jedi Padawan star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 18, 2006
    what attracted you to write an AU fic?

    I?m not sure, I guess that I sometimes have my own way of making things.
    Well, I love to write AU?s and to read them too of course, I especially have this thing for Padmé as a Jedi, I?ve read tons of those and loved them all.

    Katana_Geldar:

    Save Padme? Again, you have to get rid of Palpatine, preferably killing him off early.

    Who say that you have to kill Palpy to save Padmé? But I guess that it all depends on if she saves herself or if Anakin is there to help her. But I?m working on two ROTS AU?s and in both of them Padmé is alive (she is my favourite character to write, so sue me) and Palpy is too.

    Stop Anakin turning to the dark side? Whoa, that's a big ask. You have to work Palpatine, Padme and Obi-Wan and maybe even Mace and Yoda to get this to happen.

    You?re right, that is a big question, and a hard one too, and you do have to work with almost everyone that is involved in Anakins life. If you want to go into something major then you can go all the way back to Shmi?s death.


    Luna_Nightshade:

    What makes it very fun is when you pull in someone unexpected and make them suddenly important.

    Yeah, I know that, my next project is an excellent proof of that.


    Katana_Geldar:

    Or you put two characters together who NEVER meet. Like Han Solo and Anakin Skywalker.

    That I know too.

    But don?t forget, to those of you who maybe thinks so, but AU?s has nothing to do with us who likes them, not liking the movies.



    Oh, and I can tell you that my next project is going to be a major AU, something that I don?t think have ever been done before, basically because it?s something that only can be created in my head.





     
  25. leiamoody

    leiamoody Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Nov 8, 2005
    Well, I decided to stray from the EU the moment I picked up Heir to the Empire. Two things literally killed it for me in that book: the "hot chocolate incident" (as I like to refer to it), and Mara Jade. I knew right away that this character was being introduced solely as a foil and love interest for Luke. It was just screaming all of that, to me, anyway. Somehow, I didn't feel so guilty going on with the plotline I'd already come up with. I can't do any worse. :p


    But I'm starting to wonder now if maybe I shouldn't just chuck all of these ideas all together. My first entry of the long-simmering AU doesn't seem to be going over too well. What to do, what to do? :oops:
     
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